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Discussion Starter #1
I have always heard that Poodles (and other curly-haired breeds) are hypoallergenic dogs that don't (hardly) shed.
However, recently, I've been hearing a lot of backlash to that. People saying "There's no such thing as a hypoallergenic dog" "Shedding doesn't matter because it is the saliva that people are allergic to" "All dogs shed"

My thing is, I know people allergic to dogs that are perfectly fine around poodles (I don't know about other curly-haired breeds). My cousin is very allergic to dogs, but had no problem with my family's poodle when she was younger (and no, it's not an allergy that could have come later, because she was no ok with our neighbor's German Shepherd).
I also have a friend that is very allergic to dogs. Her skin gets itchy and her eyes watery from both a dog licking her and even from just petting them. However, she lives in a house with anywhere from 3-6 standard poodles; sometimes more if they have puppies (they breed). She has absolutely no problem with them. To be fair, her poodles do not lick as much as other dogs, but their male likes to put your hand in his mouth, and she's never complained about that bothering her.
Also, I have been to her house on multiple occasions and rarely do I see dog hair. I've been to houses with only one dog that had more hair on the floor than what is produced from the poodles, and I can honestly say that my friend with the poodles does not clean her house more than twice a week.

So, I'm not trying to start an argument, but I'm just curious... where is this backlash against calling poodles hypoallergenic coming from? As I said, I grew up with this knowledge, and while those who oppose may have been around, I've only really been hearing opposition recently. Is there truth to this and my friend just happens to be used to poodle hair/saliva but not the hair/saliva of other breeds; considering she grew up with poodles? I understand that it's impossible for a dog to not shed at all, but I will still say poodles don't shed because it is so minimal that you hardly notice.
 

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And I know people who are fine with shelties but are allergic to poodle. People can also be allergic to one dog of a certain breed and no to another of the same breed.

Depends on the person, and the dog. Maybe fewer people are allergic to poodles than other breeds, but some people with allergies will also react to poodles.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
That's really interesting. I had never heard of it the other way where a person is allergic to a poodle but not another breed.
 

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People seem to think that hypoallergenic means "non-allergenic." It doesn't -- it means "slightly allergenic." Wikipedia puts it plainly:

Hypoallergenic pets still produce allergens, but because of their coat type or absence of fur or absence of a gene that produces a certain protein, typically produce fewer allergens than others of the same species. People with severe allergies and asthma may still be affected by a hypoallergenic pet.
Some breeds are certainly less allergenic than others. It would be wrong to say that poodles or similar breeds are non-allergenic, though. :)
 

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Discussion Starter #5
I think I knew hypoallergenic didn't mean non-allergenic, but have never had it explained to me so I wasn't entirely sure.

It's interesting too, because my friend who owns the poodles doesn't have a lot of trouble with my wire-haired dachshund, but does have trouble with my Carin and my Westie mix.
 

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Anyone can be allergic to anything. I've known people who were allergic to some cats and not others. I also know a guy who is allergic to HIS OWN hair and needs to take allergy meds to get a hair cut. Poodles may overall cause less allergic reactions than other dogs, but I'm sure you can find people who are allergic to them.
 

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I am allergic to puppy saliva. I broke out in the worst case of hives that I've ever had, and in the end, had to return a puppy to the breeder as a result.

The odd part is that the pup was a direct descendant of the puppy I grew up with - my heart dog - which we raised from a pup.

So, when I started looking for another dog, I went to dozens of dog shows and pet hundreds of dogs, and let them lick me. I found that hounds, spitz breeds and short-haired dogs caused itching, as did puppies of every breed.

It took a long time, but it helped me realize that a young adult dog that had hair instead of fur was the right choice for me.
 

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I think the backlash is caused by the doodle craze, which is causing mass breedings of poodle mixes by puppy mills and BYBs and thus seriously harming dogs. (Both the dogs being bred and the ones that end up in shelters and put to sleep.)

Doodles are so popular in part because unethical breeders cheerfully tell the public that their dogs are completely allergen free, so people buy them just for that, not realizing that a) no dog can be guaranteed to be nonallergenic to every person, and b) you could easily find shelter and rescue dogs that are nonallergenic to you/your family without supporting unethical and damaging breeding practices.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
You know what, I completely forgot about the whole doodle craze. I agree, I think it is ridiculous... not to mention some of those mixes are not the... cutest dogs ever... and I rarely say that about dogs. My family was looking for dogs and we tracked down the breeder of my first dog and found out that she had switched to breeding labradoodles. This was our first encounter with these dogs (we had heard of them, but this was a while ago when the craze was only just starting), so when she told us that they wont shed, my family was really interested... then she sent a picture of the dog, and it had lab fur, and then sent us the price and it was rediculous ($2400 for a mutt)!
So yeah, I can see where all of the issues come from and that makes a lot of sense.
 
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